This is “Last Week, Last Century,” a column where I’ll take a look at some of the wacky stuff that happened over the past seven days… and the same seven days 100 years ago.
Sunday, March 2nd, 1913 – Georgy Flyorov is born in Rostov-on-Don in the Russian Empire. He eventually became a prominent nuclear physicist whose research led to the inception of the USSR’s first atomic bomb project.
Sunday, March 3rd, 2013 – The Saint Petersburg police wish they had an atomic bomb at their disposal as they attempt to disperse hundreds of Russian teenagers who had gathered to film a large-scale Harlem Shake video. Joke’s on the police, though—everyone knows even an atomic bomb couldn’t kill that damn fad.
Monday, March 3rd, 1913 – Over 8,000 women from all over the country gathered in Washington, DC to march for equality in the Women’s Suffrage Parade of 1913. They were joined by 1,500 Boy Scouts, who volunteered to protect them from mobs of rowdy men.
Monday, March 4th, 2013 – Pop rock band Train drops out of the Boy Scouts National Jamboree (to be followed shortly after by Carly Rae Jepsen) in response to a petition that denounces the Boy Scouts’ policy banning openly gay members. The Boy Scouts begin a frantic search for someone else to entertain their mobs of rowdy men.
Tuesday, March 4th, 1913 – During the New York Garment Worker’s strike, 200 garment employees break into the New York clothing factory of Samuel Shapiro. They quickly come to blows with non-union workers, eventually throwing two of them out of a second-story window to the street below.
Tuesday, March 5th, 2013 – New York fashion designer Adam Harvey unveils his new collection, “Stealth Wear,” which uses metallized fabric to conceal the wearer’s heat signature and hide them from drone strikes. Harvey’s innovation shows that garment workers will always be one step ahead of those who seek to cut their pay or blow them to smithereens.
Wednesday, March 5th, 1913 – The Washington Herald reports that newly-sworn in Vice President Thomas R. Marshall’s “tasks will be few” and that his responsibilities will “not be heavy.” The office of Vice President is considered to be that of a “reserve, with few duties to perform.”
Wednesday March 6th, 2013 – Roger Ailes, president of Fox News, says that Vice President Joe Biden is “dumb as an ashtray.” Biden also faces harsh criticism for his recommendation that homeowners “fire two blasts” from their shotguns as a means of scaring off possible intruders. Man, the Vice President can’t get no respect! Except from Leslie Knope, I guess…
Thursday, March 6th, 1913 – A 1908 Chicago ordinance which standardized the size of a loaf of bread is upheld by the US Supreme Court as constitutional. Those who oppose these regulations call their efforts a “bread war.”
Thursday, March 7th, 2013 – After last week’s reports of horse meat showing up in their meatballs, furniture giant Ikea pulls chocolate cake from its menu when high levels of coliform bacteria are found in the cake mix. This bacteria is most commonly found in feces. Long gone are the days when you only had to worry about the dimensions of your food, and not whether it was full of shit.
Friday, March 7th, 1913 – In Baltimore, The British steamboat Alum Chine catches fire while carrying 350 tons of dynamite. The ensuing explosion kills dozens and causes over $500,000 in property damage—which, adjusted for inflation, comes out to over $11 million.
Friday, March 8th, 2013 – The New York Jets insist that wide receiver Santonio Holmes reduce his $11 million base salary. Apparently since his foot injury last year, his play hasn’t been as ‘explosive’ as it used to be…he just doesn’t have that ‘fire’ in his eyes anymore.
Saturday, March 8th, 1913 – In addition to the existing National and American leagues, John T. Powers founds the Federal League, a league of 8 teams that would only last for two seasons. The champions of the second and final season were the Chicago Whales—the original occupants of what is now known as Wrigley Field.
Saturday, March 9th, 2013 – With spring training well underway, The Chicago Cubs lose to the Cleveland Indians 9-2. For perspective, the Cubs have not won the World Series since before the Chicago Whales had their first batting practice. Maybe they should try building their own damn stadium.